Exploring Bangkok’s Old Town

Bangkok’s Old Town, also called Rattanakosin, is the place you’ll discover the most breathtaking and revered points of interest in Bangkok. It’s the cultural and historical centre of the city, with glimmering temples, palaces, and historic structure on every corner. You’ll find most of Bangkok’s main points of interest and some of the finest locations to go to in Thailand here. Yes, it could be filled with vacationers, but it’s additionally brimming with allure. Whether you’re thinking about Bangkok’s history and tradition or you simply get pleasure from admiring lovely temples, exploring Bangkok’s Old Town is a should.
Below, we’ve compiled a list of actions you have to do whereas you’re exploring Bangkok’s Old Town!
No go to to Bangkok would be complete without visiting the spectacular Grand Palace. Located in the heart of Bangkok, from 1782 to 1925, it served as the official house of Thailand’s kings. Although it’s not the official residence of Thailand’s Kings, it’s nonetheless used for official events. Today, it’s some of the well-liked tourist sights in Thailand and for good causes. People from throughout the globe flock to the Grand Palace to witness its ornate design and exquisite structure. In addition, it’s residence to probably the most sacred temple in Thailand, Wat Phra Kaew or the Temple of the Emerald Buddha.
Since the Grand Palace and Wat Phra Kaew comprise a number of the most sacred sites in Thailand, remember to put on modest clothing. Men ought to wear long pants and shirts (no tank tops), whereas ladies ought to avoid naked shoulders, see-through garments, and “revealing” clothing. Also, you need to be aware that there’s a typical rip-off the place somebody dressed as a tourist information or safety tells you that “the Grand Palace is closed.” Don’t fall for this scam as they will offer you a tour of different temples “at a bargain,” whereas in actuality, you may find yourself paying more.
You may also encounter someone telling you that you simply don’t meet the dress code, but that is one other rip-off to get you to purchase or rent sarongs. If you’re not sure if you meet the gown code, go to the doorway and await the official verdict. Sarongs are usually available for free.
Bangkok National Museum sits on the former grounds of the 18th century Wang Na Palace, close to the Grand Palace. The museum was opened by King Rama V in 1874 to exhibit relics bestowed on him by his father, King Rama IV. Today, it’s home to essentially the most extensive collection of Thai artwork and artefacts in Thailand, making it a fantastic place to visit for anybody who loves historical past and tradition. Its assortment spans various periods of Thai history, providing a fantastic introduction to the country’s art and structure. There are three permanent exhibitions here: Thai History Gallery, Archeological and Art History Gallery, and Decorative Arts and Ethnological Collection. Besides Thai artefacts, you could also see artefacts from all over Asia.
Ensured to go to the National Museum early in your journey to Thailand, so you’ll have a greater understanding of the temples and ruins you see later in the nation, such as Ayutthaya and Sukhothai.
Loha Prasat Temple, or Wat Ratchanatdaram Worawihan, is a stunning temple built-in 1846 on the request of King Rama III. The design of the temple was impressed by 2 other related temples present in Sri Lanka and India. Standing 36 metres tall, the temple is easily identified by its 37 beautiful golden spires. The 37 spires signify the 37 virtues needed to reach enlightenment. In the previous, the temple was generally recognized as the steel castle or the iron temple because the spires had been originally black. The gold leaf was nonetheless added just lately.
The inside of the beautiful major temple is a small maze of pillars for you to discover. There’s a staircase that’ll take you many floors up, and every of the flooring will present a different perspective of the temple. Once you attain the highest, you’ll get a hanging 360° view of town. At the very high of the temple, you’ll find a shrine that incorporates relics of the Buddha. People stroll all the best way as much as this shrine to hope and pay their respects.
Wat Pho is probably one of the oldest, hottest, and most essential temples in Bangkok. Covering an space of 20-acre, it’s one of the largest temples within the city as properly. It’s often known as the Temple of the Reclining Buddha as a outcome of the highlight of this temple is the well-known reclining Buddha that measures forty six metres long and practically 15 metres tall. This gold-covered statue is amongst the largest and most necessary reclining Buddhas on the earth.
Most people come to Wat Pho solely to see the reclining Buddha, so the rest of the temple is rarely busy. However, the temple has a lot more to offer. Besides housing the enormous reclining Buddha, you could also discover over 1,000 other Buddha pictures inside the temple grounds. In addition, Wat Pho is the birthplace of Thai therapeutic massage. Today, it’s nonetheless among the many most important centres for finding out traditional medication.
Need a break from Bangkok’s well-known markets and well-liked tourist attractions? Treat your senses at Bangkok’s vibrant flower market, Pak Khlong Talat, for one thing utterly completely different. Pak Khlong Talat is the most important wholesale and retail contemporary flower market in the capital. Here, you’ll find a extensive range of flowers and flora-related objects, from potted crops and buckets crammed with freshly minimize stems to all types of flower bouquets and arrangements. Almost all kinds of flowers grown around Thailand, as nicely as imported flowers, are available here.
In addition to the attractive burst of colours, the flower market is also very fragrant. Sweet-smelling jasmines, brilliant yellow marigolds, and imported red roses, all kinds of flowers sit aspect by facet in this flower market. Since Thailand is the most important exporter of orchids on the planet, you’ll additionally discover orchids of all shapes and colors throughout the market. In certain seasons, Siam tulip, poinsettias, and large sunflowers are additionally obtainable.
Although Soi Rambuttri is positioned very near Khao San Road, it doesn’t get all of the hype and is more like a hidden gem in Bangkok. Many folks argue that it offers you a taste of how Bangkok used to look before it grew to become filled with skyscrapers. The atmosphere may be very stress-free versus most of Bangkok. It’s a singular place to go to, and the most effective factor is, you don’t need to spend too much cash to have a great time here.
Soi Rambuttri Road offers a fantastic mixture of eating places, guesthouses, bars, and avenue food stalls. It’s an excellent place to go if you want to strive more authentic Thai food. From pork noodle soup and green chicken curry to Thai milk tea, quite a few scrumptious foods are available here at an inexpensive worth. In addition to food, you’ll also discover avenue distributors along either side of the street promoting all types of things, similar to garments and local souvenirs. You may even discover plenty of therapeutic massage chairs right alongside the street!
Wat Arun is one other famous temple in Bangkok and definitely a should visit when you’re exploring Bangkok’s Old Town. Locally generally identified as Wat Chaeng or The Temple of the Dawn, the temple is situated on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River. Thanks to its riverside location and incredible design, Wat Arun is definitely some of the beautiful temples in Bangkok. The major spire is tastefully decorated with small pieces of colourful ceramic tiles and Chinese porcelain positioned in intricate patterns. It stands more than 70 metres above sea degree.
You can climb the central spire if you’d like. However, remember that the steps are very steep, so getting up and down could be difficult. Once you reach the top, you probably can see breathtaking views of the Chao Phraya River, Wat Pho, and the Grand Palace.
Although Wat Arun is stunning all day lengthy, you might not register its magnificence until you’ve seen it at sunset while the temple is lit up. That stated, the best time to visit Wat Arun is early morning, near opening hours earlier than the crowds arrive. Remember that apart from being a extremely popular vacationer attraction, Wat Arun is also an necessary place of worship for Buddhists. Therefore, at all times dress appropriately if you visit.
Famously known as the Bangkok backpacker central, Khao San Road may need no historical sights to supply. However, it’s still a great place to go to throughout your Bangkok’s Old Town exploration. The 1km lengthy highway is filled with finances guesthouses, mid-range motels, bars, golf equipment, restaurants, market stalls, journey brokers, therapeutic massage parlours, web cafés, tattoo parlours, and many extra.
One of the best things to do right here is sampling some delicious avenue meals. You can discover road distributors promoting Pad Thai and Spring Rolls on the lowest price within the city. In addition to Thai food, you’ll also find hamburger joints, pizza parlours, and so many more. Khao San Road is also famous for its nightlife, so if you need to dance the night time away, make sure to visit one of the many bars and clubs alongside the street.
Sanam Luang (the Royal Field) or Thung Pra Meru (Royal Cremation Ground) has been round for over two centuries since the time of King Rama I. It was the location of royal ceremonies and functions, together with the cremation of kings, queens, and high-ranking princes up till the reign of King Rama III, when the King decreed that each one cremations must be held outside the old metropolis partitions.
Today, Sanam Luang is a gathering ground for numerous activities, corresponding to kite flying. And an excellent place to get pleasure from a day family picnic or a night stroll. In the evenings, you can watch locals play sepak takraw, and children can get pleasure from feeding the pigeons. Surrounded by well-known landmarks like the Grand Palace, the National Museum, and the National Gallery, this park is a unbelievable spot to take a break out of your sightseeing journey in Bangkok’s Old Town.
Also known as the Golden Mount or Phu Khao Thong, Wat Saket is a revered site for locals and a famous vacationer attraction in Bangkok’s Old Town. It options an artificial hill topped with a 5.8-metre tall golden chedi. The 80-metre-tall hill, with the chedi, was as quickly as the very best point in Bangkok before all the skyscrapers filled the city. Climbing the hill is definitely price the effort as you can see stunning bells and intriguing statues. From the top of the temple, you possibly can get pleasure from spectacular panoramic views of Bangkok’s Old Town.
In November, the temple usually holds an annual temple truthful. The honest lasts per week during Loy Krathong (or the Festival of Lights). A candlelit procession to the highest of the Golden Mount marks the start of the celebration. Wat Saket is alive with vibrant lanterns, ornamental flags, fairground games, and food vendors during the competition.
Another temple you must visit in Bangkok’s Old Town is Wat Suthat. Wat Suthat Thepwararam is probably considered one of the most spectacular Buddhist temples in Bangkok. It’s particularly in style for the purple Giant Swing at its entrance. In the past, young men rode the swing high within the air through the Brahim thanksgiving ceremony. However, this apply was stopped in 1932. Today, the oversized swing has become the principle attraction for tourists visiting the temple.
In addition to the Giant Swing, Wat Suthat also boasts a glorious prayer corridor with spectacular murals, sweeping roofs, and superbly hand-carved teakwood door panels.
Bangkok’s National Gallery was the house of the former Royal Thai Mint. Upon entering the gallery, you’ll instantly really feel the outdated and traditional environment. There is lots of classical art work right here, however you can also discover quite a few contemporary art work. The gallery’s everlasting assortment focuses on artworks by Thai artists from the 17th century onward. These embrace historical non secular paintings and traditional work. In addition, the gallery also hosts a corridor of sculptures the place you’ll find sculptures of Thai historic figures. Aside from the permanent assortment, the National Gallery also includes a series of momentary and modern exhibitions in the garden.
One of the preferred activities in Bangkok’s Old Town is to watch the sundown over the river and Wat Arun. There are numerous rooftop bars with spectacular 360-degree views to choose from, similar to Sala Rattanakosin, The Deck, Riva Arun, and Eagle Nest Bar..

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